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Teacher investigated on claims of inappropriate contact

James David Dickson
The Detroit News

A 36-year-old teacher at Woodhaven High School is on paid administrative leave as the school district and police investigate an allegation of inappropriate conduct involving two 17-year-old boys, authorities confirmed Thursday.

Sgt. Bill Huddleston of the Brownstown Police Department confirmed the investigation, which he said came as a referral from Child Protective Services. Brownstown police have yet to interview anyone involved in the case.

Deputy Chief Robert Matthews said the department got a referral from the school district last week and from Child Protective Services this week. No charges have been filed yet against the teacher, who is a 10-year veteran of the school district.

Bob Wheaton, spokesman of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, which has Child Protective Services under its umbrella, said that while he couldn’t speak to the specifics of the Woodhaven case, CPS, when it receives allegations of inappropriate conduct involving teachers, forwards that information to the appropriate law-enforcement agency.

The teacher is believed to have sent “some pretty suggestive texts” to the two teens, and to have had inappropriate physical contact with one of them, Matthews said. He added that the investigation is in its beginning stages.

Michigan’s age of consent is 16 but state law specifically prohibits teachers and school officials in positions of authority from such activity

Mark Greathead, superintendent of the Woodhaven-Brownstown School District, declined to say what the woman taught, only that she was on paid suspension as the investigation progresses.

“This is being investigated by the school district’s attorney and human resources department,” Greathead said in a statement. “We are cooperating with Brownstown Police Department. We understand that they are investigating as well.”